Before an individual applies for naturalization, he or she must meet a few requirements. Depending on the individual’s situation, there are different requirements that may apply. General requirements for naturalization are below.
- Be at least 18 years old at the time of filing Form N-400, Application for Naturalization.
- Be a permanent resident (have a “Green Card”) for at least 5 years.
- Show that you have lived for at least 3 months in the state or USCIS district where you apply.
- Demonstrate continuous residence in the United States for at least 5 years immediately preceding the date of filing Form N-400.
- Show that you have been physically present in the United States for at least 30 months out of the 5 years immediately preceding the date of filing Form N-400.
- Be able to read, write, and speak basic English.
- Have a basic understanding of U.S. history and government (civics).
- Be a person of good moral character.
- Demonstrate an attachment to the principles and ideals of the U.S. Constitution.
In general, the naturalization process includes the following steps:
- Determine if you are already a U.S. citizen.
- Determine your eligibility to become a U.S. citizen.
- Prepare Form N-400, Application for Naturalization.
- Submit Form N-400, Application for Naturalization.
- Go to the biometrics (fingerprinting) appointment, if applicable.
- Complete the interview.
- Receive a decision from USCIS on your Form N-400, Application for Naturalization.
- Receive a notice to take the Oath of Allegiance.
- Take the Oath of Allegiance to the United States.
- Understand your rights and responsibilities as a U.S. citizen.
Oath of Allegiance
“I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen;
that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic;
that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same;
that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law;
that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law;
that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law;
and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.”
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